The Ritzville Adams County Journal - Eastern Adams County's Only Independent Voice Since 1887

SNYP receives grant for trap-neuter-return project

 


The local Spay Neuter Your Pet (SNYP) organization received a grant from the Washington Federation of Animal Control and Care. The grant will go toward funding a trap-neuter-return (TNR) effort for the feral cat population in Ritzville.

SNYP Board Member Mikki Kison explained the six-month project will focus on trapping and neutering or spaying feral cats and returning them to the trapping location.

Kison said the organization completed a TNR project in 2016 with 72 feral cats. In the two years since the first project, she said there has not been a population increase in the areas where the animals were caught.

Kison explained SNYP is currently seeking volunteers to help the organization with the project.

She said volunteers will need to commit to a schedule to place the traps, periodically check them and take the cats to veterinarian Dr. Tim Johnstone to be spayed or neutered.

Kison said when a volunteer finds a cat in a trap, they should examine the ears to see if there is a small tip or notch. Feral cats that have a notched ear will have already been spayed or neutered.

After the cat has the surgery, the volunteer would need to return it to the location where it was caught.

Kison explained TNR is a humane approach to controlling and maintaining feral cat populations. Without the ability to reproduce, a cat colony’s population will stabilize and decrease over time. A feral cat that has been spayed or neutered will also be less aggressive.

She said the problem with simply removing a cat from a colony is another cat with the ability to mate will eventually join and increase the population.

Kison said SNYP will provide the traps, and the grant will cover the cost of the surgeries.

The organization is also working with Ritzville Police Chief Dave McCormick to identify areas with a large feral cat population.

Kison said residents can contact SNYP if they know a location of a feral cat colony.

Another way residents can support the project is to purchase a “We Love Our Pets” license plate at any Washington state vehicle licensing office. Kison said a portion of the proceeds from each license plate sold goes toward funding the grant.

SNYP will have an informational meeting about the project on June 12 at 5:30 p.m. at the Washington State University (WSU) Extension Office in Ritzville.

Those interested in volunteering for the project, or who would like more information can contact Kison at 509-431-0843 or visit the group’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/snyp99169/.

 

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